The cultural region of the Americas, Latin America comprises multiple nation-states and an area that stretches from Mexico to Tierra del Fuego and includes much of the Caribbean. A melting pot of ideas, customs and social behaviours, Latin America is a group of countries that is undergoing unprecedented growth across retail real estate, leisure and hospitality. Over the next few pages, RLI takes a closer look at the region and the sectors that are more prevalent than ever.
One of the main collateral effects of the pandemic that is now in remission has been, without a doubt, the new paradigm of consumption, which is not only explained by the significant changes in consumer purchasing behaviour but also by the new business models and growth strategies that began to transform the value chain of the retail industry, affecting everything from manufacturers and wholesale companies to distributors and retailers, highlights KPMG’s ‘Consumer and Retail in South America 2022 Trends’.
In this context, the Latin American region was one of those that saw the most growth in online commerce during this period, reaching a growth of close to 37 per cent (especially in Argentina, Brazil and Mexico, where the increase was 79 per cent, 35 per cent and 27 per cent respectively).
The accelerated use of e-commerce forced retailers to make significant changes in operations, strengthen logistic networks, and in some cases create partnerships to optimize delivery. The successful development of omni-channel offerings, such as ease of payment, delivery times and return policies, will be a differentiating factor for sector participants moving forward.
Meanwhile, the ‘Fitch Ratings 2022 Outlook: Latin American Retail’ explains that revenues for non-essential Latin American retailers, such as department stores and specialty retailers, will continue to grow in 2022 after a recovery in 2021. Median revenue growth for 2022 is expected to be in the high-single digits for non-essential retailers after showing a median increase of 18 per cent in 2021.
Away from the retail industry, the attractions industry in Latin America is also growing according to the Blooloop report: ‘The Top 15 Amusement Parks in Latin America’ by Bea Mitchell. The region is home to many theme parks and amusement parks, the most popular being Six Flags Mexico in Mexico City. Visitor numbers at the top 10 theme parks in Latin America totalled 15.7 million in 2019. Three key factors play a particularly important role in the success of attractions in this area. These are politics, economics and safety.
According to research from TOPHOTELNEWS, in the coming years, 528 hotels with 130,422 rooms will open across Latin America. Their predictions highlighted that 2021 was a busy year for the region, as 219 were planned, that would bring 44,128 rooms into play. In 2022, another 146 projects with 36,143 rooms are due for completion. Things will slow down in 2023, however, as only 65 projects with 14,567 keys are currently on the development slate. For 2024 and beyond, another 98 new properties and 35,584 rooms are on the cards at present.
Projects Across Latin America
With the launch of Rosewood São Paulo earlier this year, Cidade Matarazzo by developers Groupe Allard is now fully open and is a quiet, green refuge in the heart of the Paulista Avenue region, one of São Paulo’s most lively neighbourhoods. The charming village of historic, landmark buildings, designed in 1904 and being restored by developers Groupe Allard, is an unprecedented venture in Latin America’s largest economic and cultural capital. The unique destination is home to a 45,000sq m park (including the urban requalification project), a 135,000sq m building area, the 56,000sq m six-star hotel complex operated by Rosewood Hotels & Resorts, a 10,000sq m House of Creativity, a 4,000sq m office building, a 28,500sq m retail village featuring 70 exclusive international brands, 34 restaurants that is capable of serving up to 15,000 meals a day and 2,200 parking spaces. To live in or visit Cidade Matarazzo allows one to revel in the serenity of an oasis while enjoying every bit of the glamour of Sao Paulo.
A project being designed by Chapman Taylor for its client Provalor is Parque Oeste. While it is still in the design concept stage, it will seemingly be an innovative, large-scale mixed-use project in Cali, a beautiful city in western Colombia near the foothills of the Cauca Valley. Located close to the university in the city centre, the scheme, which includes a shopping centre and offices, is designed and landscaped to merge seamlessly into its locality. Responding to the river and the natural, green environment that characterises much of the city, the architecture takes advantage of the terraced valley location and draws inspiration from the local, rocky landscape as well as the city’s river. Chapman Taylor’s Madrid studio was appointed to provide architecture and interior design services for the 110,00sq m project, which includes a vibrant mix of uses, such as an office block, 186 retail units, a supermarket, a cinema, a children´s park and a food court alongside 5,000sq m of green spaces.
Reaffirming its commitment to the region and potential growth, Mallplaza has announced, during its shareholders’ meeting, the resumption of construction of Mallplaza Cali in Colombia after it was paused in its initial construction phase back in 2020 to the restrictions resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic. “Growing is part of Mallplaza’s DNA, and that is why today, given the business conditions and projections, we believe it is time to resume our project in Cali. Colombia is a market with high potential, where we are consolidating our proposal. We believe that Mallplaza Cali will be a winning proposal in its market with attractive commercial partners and multiple options for people. We expect it to become a unique destination in the city and the Valle del Cauca’,” explained Fernando de Peña, General Manager of Plaza S.A. Mallplaza Cali will have a central location in the city, with important north and south connectivity, which will attract Cali residents. It will feature a great fashion proposal with national and international brands, such as Inditex (Zara Berskha, Pull&Bear, Stradivarius), Decathlon, Homecenter, and Cinemark. In line with the proposal for multiple uses and visiting purposes, the new urban centre will also have an Urban Rooftop that will incorporate a complete gastronomic offer. This new project will add 67,000sq m to the company’s leasable area and is scheduled to open in the first half of 2024.
Mall Vivo Santiago, the most ambitious development planned by the commercial centres operator VivoCorp, from the Corpgroup Holding, is expected to open its doors this year. Located in the Vicuña MacKenna Avenue in Santiago de Chile and fueled by the convergence of two metro lines, will have an investment of over $200M and will contain over 100,000sq m GLA distributed over six levels of commercial space plus an apartment block, an office tower, a food court, restaurants, a supermarket and several entertainment areas. With main offices in Santiago de Chile, VivoCorp already owns seven commercial centres and operates three more, plus four outlets spread around the whole country. The project features different types of uses, services, retail and entertainment and a parking offer that is in accordance with what is required by the city of Santiago.
Distrito Armida is a new multi-phase mixed-use community in the upscale city of Monterrey, Mexico, masterplanned and designed by JERDE and developed by GM Capital. The first three phases of the project are clustered at the southern end of the site and provide the neighbourhood with office and residential towers, a hotel, retail, and a wide array of public spaces for the community. The neighbourhood of San Pedro Garza Garcia stands somewhat separated from the city centre of Monterrey and is an upscale district for young professionals. Phase 1 was launched last year and features an iconic office tower atop a commercial podium full of shops, restaurants, and outdoor spaces. The 20-floor office building – branded Torre Malva – a WeWork, and a 170-key hotel are currently under construction. The commercial podium full of shops, restaurants, and attractive outdoor spaces, will help activate Phase 1 beyond the typical workday. Phase 2 combines the programs of an extension to the adjacent hospital with both high-end medical offices and a hotel. Elegant connections of adjacent programs are made through organic forms and pedestrian friendly pathways. The architectural design is clean, modern, and iconic while the scale feels elegant and welcoming. The third phase delivers three residential towers with over 400 combined units, in addition to a 28-storey office tower. The tower facades are an articulated grid of concrete and glass, giving the buildings texture while providing lots of natural light and balconies for the units. At the base of the towers lies a vibrant, kinetic retail podium – filled with food & beverage destinations, amenity programs, and boutique retailers. Scattered with a range of dining options, this permeable podium will be a local destination for apartment dwellers, commuters, and more.
Another project by JERDE, for client Grupo DLG is Peninsula. Launched last year in Tijuana, Mexico, Peninsula is more than a place to shop, it is an experiential destination for locals and visitors alike to engage and explore. Poised to become the new heart of Tijuana, this New Town Center of fashion, fun, and leisure will be the epicentre of a dynamic mixed-use neighbourhood district that offers state of the art retail and dining concepts, entertainment, offices, residences, and hotels. Peninsula is a 750,000sq ft, next-generation mixed-use project in Tijuana located at a prime gateway site just south of the Tijuana International Airport at the crossroads of Via Rapida Poiniente, Via Rapida Oriente, and Highway 2. The massing is very porous from the perimeter, opening up multiple sightlines and inviting people in. The buildings have been designed to create strong identity for individual tenants and eliminate the feel of the traditional mall in every way. The Central Plaza space has abundant shade, with seating, picnic, and viewing areas, whilst the Sky Terraces Zone contains multiple decks on all three levels arrayed amongst vertical tree canopies, which extend the useable roof space. This signature vertical urban oasis space anchors the centre of the project.
Creating an all-inclusive, mixed-use environment in Mexico, developers Fibra Uno, along with architects Pelli Clark Pelli and a world-class team, have embarked on a mission to create an unparalleled experience unlike anything in Mexico. Mitikah – described as “the city alive” – will be a premier urban neighbourhood set in the cultural heart of Mexico City. It’s designed to encourage a new way of living, and will be a place where people can gather to socialise, build new traditions, and share experiences for generations to come when it opens its doors to the public in September. Mitikah will be comprised of five unique towers including Torre Mitikah, Torre Churubusco, Torre Universidad, and Torre Coyoacan. With over a million square meters of construction development, it will feature an assortment of residential, commercial, and retail space, as well as a hotel, conference centre, shopping complex, and movie theatre. Outdoor plazas will be complemented by several landscape amenities to create an engaging—and all-inclusive—mixed-use environment.
Under construction by developer Thor Urbana, The Park is a mixed-use project that will be a central attraction of San Luis Potosí. The project, by the renowned firm Elkus Manfredi Architects, combines offices, hotels, residential towers and a Town Center format shopping centre. It will have more than 65,000sq m of GLA divided into two phases and pads for the development of offices, hotel and residences. The project is located south of the city of San Luis Potosí, in the zone of greater economic development, bordering strategically with the Tangamanga Park and the Convention Center of San Luis Potosí, the most important meeting point in the city of Potosí. Set to have more than 2,000 parking spaces, the project will be home to boutiques with the best brands, the most outstanding culinary offerings and entertainment and all of this will be in one place to give customers a complete experience with outdoor spaces that will be perfectly integrated with cutting-edge architecture. The Park, San Luis Potosí is set to join the iconic Thor Urbana projects that stand out for their unbeatable locations in the main cities of the country when it opens in winter this year.
Parque Tepeyac is another project under construction in Mexico and it is estimated that the project will be completed during the final quarter of 2022 by developer Fibra Danhos. They are part of a 50/50 joint venture in the new project with the Gustavo A. Madero Delegation. Fibra Danhos will be responsible for the design, construction, marketing and operation of the property. The project reached 70 per cent completion in its construction, as disclosed by the developer in its Q4 2021 report. Parque Tepeyac is located in the northeast of Mexico City and it has an area of approximately 55,000 square meters. The shopping centre will have more than 120,000sq m of commercial area including the participation of “Liverpool, Sears, Cinépolis, a self-service store and they are in the process of defining the anchor concept of entertainment”.
With a construction start date that slipped into 2021 from its original start date of 2020 due to the effects of the coronavirus, the renovation of Galleries Metepec Malltertainment shopping centre is ongoing, but it will become the new shopping centre of the Toluca Valley when it does finally open its doors. Upon completion, it will have an area of 55,220sq m, which will make it the largest shopping centre in Mexico. Galerías Metepec Malltertainment is a new concept that was developed by the construction company GICSA in conjunction with Liverpool that will combine the experience of ‘shopping’ with entertainment. It will be located in the Municipality of Metepec , it will be made up of a totally new construction that is located just behind the Costco shopping chain and the current Galerías Metepec shopping centre. Once the Galerías Metepec is remodelled, it will be joined with the new construction through a bridge that will be located on Paseo del Agricultura street. Galerías Metepec Malltertainment will be the first mixed-use development that will include firms that will come to this area for the first time and its main tenants will be department stores, self-service stores, restaurants, cinemas, gymnasium, as well as offices from local companies or for personal use.
Another project under development by Thor Urbana is The Landmark Tijuana, which is a project that is located in the Golden Zone, the area with the highest real estate growth in the city of Tijuana in Mexico. The Landmark Tijuana will bring together the best shopping, dining and entertainment offerings unlike anywhere else in the area. It will be complemented by an exclusive residential tower, luxury hotel and class A+ office spaces to become the new place to live, work and play. The lifestyle centre will feature 308,000sq ft of leasable area, whilst the surrounding facilities within the scheme will include 154,000sq ft of A+ office space, 190 residences, a brand new hotel with over 200 rooms, more than 2,000 car parking spaces and all this will open to the public in spring of next year. The upcoming project will offer a unique mixture of cultural diversity from the region, integrating itself into an existing, bicultural, vibrant community in search of exceptional experiences. The Landmark Tijuana will transform the lifestyle of every person who has the chance to experience this most innovative development in northern Mexico.
Nestled between a leisure coastline to the south and surrounded by green rolling hills in all directions, Pacifico Town Center is inspired by the majestic, natural beauty of its surrounding as a place of wonder, discovery, and urban refuge. The project by JERDE for its client, developer London & Regional Properties is conceived as an “outdoor playground” with a strong emphasis on entertainment, nature and creative art as a catalyst to bring people of all ages together. The ongoing development is adjacent to an Air Force base and Pacifico Town Center is part of a larger live-work-play vision plan conceived by JERDE. Phase 1 of the Town Center development is located along the main Town Center Drive corridor and will bring over 200 units of housing and an office tower, along with an abundance of retail, F&B, and entertainment options. Visitors will be treated to a unique and simple, rustic architectural sensibility that was inspired by nature, through the usage of natural materials in combination with creative building composition. A creative Art Walk forms the main street, enlivening the project with local arts and culture, whilst The River Walk is an “outdoor playground” for all age groups. Together, the Art Walk and River Walk complete a continuous pedestrian loop and promise new exploration for residents and visitors alike. An opening date is not currently listed.
Being redeveloped by Parque Arauco and Grupo Centenario to modernise and extend a well-known retail institution, the Camino Real shopping centre in San Isidro, one of Lima’s prime commercial and residential zones, will be refurbished and extended to transform the existing centre and bring a modern retail, office and hospitality hub to Peru’s capital. Being designed by Chapman Taylor, who were invited by the two leading Latin America retail developers to develop the concept design as part of an international competition, the vision for the extension includes a three-floor department store, a food court, a hypermarket and a cineplex, served by seven floors of car parking. The reconfiguration will respect the district’s history and urban environment while adding a contemporary flavour. The dynamic interior spaces will incorporate a design motif which references the nearby Bosque el Olivar, a highly cherished green space in the bustling city. Sustainability is also a key design feature. An adjacent plot of land will be used to create a brand new shopping centre, with four floors of retail set around a central atrium. A hotel will also be provided, and three office towers in the existing centre will be refurbished, bringing modern and high-quality workspace to the development, all connected by a green roof. Construction is ongoing with no completion date given for the renovation.